transaction of will

When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you

– Psalm 56:3

Fear, worry, and anxiety emerge from an unbelieving heart.

God doesn’t believe for us.

Lord, help us overcome our unbelief. Help us get over ourselves and believe in Your character, Your love, and Your promises.

Faith is a transaction of will where a person transfers his trust to God.



wow. the story of God.

The greatest story ever. Retold by my brother and friend, Matt Papa. I hope you will take the time to watch it. This story involves you, whether you like it or not.

The Story of God

To God be the glory. Forever and ever. Amen.

give thanks – day 15

Today I am thankful for the community of believers The Lord has blessed me with in Wake Forest. They are so quick to love and serve me. As well as rebuke and correct me.

As Stephen and I move forward into this new chapter, I’m overwhelmed with how many people are offering advice, job leads, and even possibly their homes in order to serve us so we can better serve Him.

Overwhelmed by the church actually being the church. So good. So sweet. So blessed. Thank you, Jesus.

give thanks – day 3

Next to my salvation, the greatest gift the Lord has ever given me is my fiance, Stephen.

Never has someone known or loved me so well. He is my love, my pursuer, my best friend, my leader, my comic relief, my biggest fan, and my favorite person ever. He challenges me daily, loves me dearly, and encourages me always.

Although he may look intimidating, he is a sweet, selfless romantic. My own Mr. Darcy. (Seriously. He gave me a leather bound copy of Jane Austen’s novels. Including Pride and Prejudice with specific sections marked, complete with his intentions written in the front cover. *swoon*) I’m a lucky lady. Believe me, I know.

To my love….

Stephen, I love you so much. You make me want to be a better, more godly woman. You have shown me selflessness and love beyond comprehension. You are patient and gracious when I’m difficult and stubborn. Even when I am unlovable, you are outspoken of your affections for me. You love me like Jesus. The more I see that lived out, the more I am drawn to the lavish love of my Jesus. Grateful for even a fallen earthly glimpse of His perfect love.

You’re the best snuggler, a true competitor (who never lets me win – which I appreciate), and ridiculous as ever. I know I’m weird, but you’re weird as woah–which is comforting because I feel somewhat normal when we’re together 🙂 You love my crazy family and fit right in! Let it be known that they adore you as well.

Even though we’re 6 hours away, you are interested in every little detail of my life and anxiously await the day you can join me in them. And we both pray that is very soon! It will be the greatest honor to be your wife–to serve you and minister alongside you. I am extremely blessed to be your girl. The one you chose. Your forever. I pray that you know without a doubt that you are mine.

Love always,


give thanks – day 1

I am possibly the worst person when it comes to commitment (ask my fiancé). I find a way to wrap myself in excuses or I get so busy that I can’t finish anything I start (hello, ENFJ/P- I forget).

My hurried, chaotic nature causes me to become so worried and anxious that I rarely stop to give thanks. I focus on my problems, but not the blessings.

Gosh, I’m so far from my family—-thank you for a family that loves me and I love enough to miss.

I work until 9pm 5 days a week! This is awful—thank you Jesus for my job.

This semester is going to kill me—thank you for the opportunity to study Your Word and learn to be a better follower and disciple-maker.

My bed is 6 feet in the air! I’m an adult not a student—thank you, Lord that I have a soft, warm place to rest my head.

I’m challenging myself this month to have a conscious attitude of thanks. From the big to small. Significant to insignificant. And to give all of the thanks, worship, & praise to God.

Day 1…today I am thankful for my roommate and friend, Suzanne who had homemade broccoli cheddar soup and sister Schubert rolls waiting on me after work 🙂 the best kind of end to a long long day.

Please join me on this journey.

“Give thanks with a grateful heart. Give thanks to the Holy One. Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son…..give thanks.”

recognizing Jesus

We step right out with recognition of God in some things, then self-consideration enters our lives and down we go. If you are truly recognizing your Lord, you have no business being concerned about how and where He engineers your circumstances. The things surrounding you are real, but when you look at them you are immediately overwhelmed, and even unable to recognize Jesus . . . Be reckless immediately–totally unrestrained and willing to risk everything–by casting your all upon Him. – Oswald Chambers

Explore the word recognize with me. When generally use the term upon seeing someone from afar. “Hey. I recognize that person. She works in my office.” This use of the word has a very casual and seemingly distant characteristic. It doesn’t allow for great familiarity because if you were familiar with the individual, you would have responded differently. “Hey. There’s Kathy. Hi Kathy!”

The word recognize is not a casual word at all. Webster defines the verb recognize as:  to acknowledge formally as to admit as being lord or sovereign, to admit as being of particular status, to admit as being one entitled to be heard.

When Oswald speaks of recognizing Jesus, he is not referring to a casual glance from afar. He is talking about a deep intimate connection that exalts Jesus as Lord and then responds immediately to His beckon because of who He is.

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus spends the first portion of the book ministering publicly to the multitudes in Galilee. Then we see the disciples come onto the picture – Jesus calls them and sends them out. A great portion of the last half of Mark is Jesus teaching privately to the disciples, who will preach the Gospel throughout the world.

The disciples have it made. They get to sit at the feet of Jesus while he teaches crowds of people and then have the parables explained to them in private. They have seen first-hand the teachings, miracles, and person of Christ. Yet, how dumb were they?! Over and over in Scripture, they fail to recognize who Jesus really is. (There is hope for us yet!)

The demons recognized Jesus more quickly than the Twelve! In Mark 1:24 the evil spirit recognizes Jesus, “What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? . . . I know who you are–the Holy One of God!” Again in Mark 5:7, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God?” In Mark 9:20 when the demon possessed boy came into the presence of Jesus “it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion.” The enemies of Jesus are quicker to recognize Him then those who claim to be His followers.

Why is that?

Maybe it’s because we are horribly selfish, and we know that once we recognize Jesus we have only one option–reckless abandon to ourselves and reckless pursuit of Him.

open hands

To finally let go of my plans
These earthly kingdoms built of sand
Jesus at your cross I stand with open hands

And I lift my hands open wide let the whole world sing
how you’ve loved, how you died, how you set me free!
Free at last I surrender all I am
with open hands
with open hands

Why is there so much confusion in surrender? Or is it just incomplete surrender that brings confusion? Are my hands fully open? Or are they holding onto things – security, comfort, convenience, family, plans. . .